The Fast & Furious franchise has been gradually loosening its grip on reality for a decade, so nobody was surprised in the slightest when it was confirmed that the ninth installment would be boldly going where the series had never gone before, finally giving fans the trip to outer space they’d been clamoring to see for years.
How does it happen? Obviously, Tyrese’s Roman Pearce and Ludacris’ Tej suit up in scuba gear to sit behind the wheel of a rocket-powered Pontiac Fiero and launch from the roof of a cargo plane. What happens when they get there? Naturally, they crash straight into a rogue satellite and blow it to smithereens. Space travel is incredibly intricate and complicated, so how do they navigate? With the steering wheel and pedals, of course.
Incredibly, despite how insanely preposterous the entire scene is, director Justin Lin revealed in a recent interview that he’d actually spoken to people from NASA about the logistics of sending a beaten up car beyond the stars, and it’s no surprise to find out that the professionals were more than a little incredulous.
“Going to space was not something I took for granted or I was very flippant about. It is something that I did have a lot of conversations about. A lot of conversations. And it went from rocket scientists laughing, going, ‘What the f*ck?’, to us saying, ‘Well, can this really happen? If other rocket scientists have to get up there and the capsules are coated with these polymers? Blah blah blah’. This is something that was thought out. If anything, logistically, scientifically, it’s one of the most sound action set pieces in our franchise.”
If John Cena can zipline from one end of Edinburgh to the other in a completely straight line via several strategically placed harpoon guns without people questioning the physics and logistics behind it, then Lin arguably didn’t need to speak to the folks at NASA about Fast & Furious 9‘s trip outside our atmosphere. He did, though, and while it’s hardly going to be lauded for scientific accuracy and realism, there is at least some basis in fact that makes one of the wildest moments in the entire Fast Saga one of the most feasible, which sums up the entire appeal of the brand nicely.